I’m so sorry for my lack of writing for such a long time, but I am happy to announce that I am coming back to blogging and covering the Yankees!
So here we go…
The New York Yankees are currently 1 1/5 games behind the Toronto Blue Jays for the AL East Division lead, and 4 games ahead for the first AL Wild Card spot, and this is with 30 games left in the regular season. So when we look at the playoff chances, we are talking about almost a sure spot at the Wild Card, and a reasonable chance at the Division title. Baseball Prospectus has the Yankees at 98 percent chance of making the playoffs, and that’s with 30.2 percent for the division. The fact that the Yanks have been playing so well has contributed to these percentages. The Bombers have won 5 of their last 6 games, but haven’t been able to catch the Blue Jays after they have won 8 of their last 10 and been playing amazing since the Trade Deadline, where they made a few key acquisitions which should boost them strongly into the playoffs, with one of the best offenses in baseball. All the rest of the teams in the East aren’t realistically in the picture anymore with the best after the Yankees being the Tampa Bay Rays with a mere 7.7 percent for the playoffs, and the Orioles and Red Sox both at less than 1 percent.The very interesting thing about this race, other than the fact that its so neck and neck, is that the Blue Jays and Yankees have the top two offenses in runs scored in the majors!
Other than the offense, which has been carrying the Yankees all season long, a couple of young faces have appeared in the Yankees rotation, which have quietly helped the club greatly. Those names are Nathan Eovaldi and Luis Severino. Eovaldi currently has the best winning percentage for all MLB starters with .875 winning percentage. That has come partially because of the run support he gets, but he definitely has been a great surprise. Severino, or “Sevy”, the rookie who came up pretty recently, has had an outstanding 2.19 ERA, and a strikeout per inning. He is young and can carry a good, young Yankees rotation into the playoffs.
The New York Yankees currently stand “only” 3 games out of the American League Wild Card race. The are behind the Angels, Mariners, Kansas City, and Baltimore. In the division, they are in third place, 2.5 games behind Baltimore and Toronto, who both have been having huge seasons.
If you look what’s to blame the Yankees squad to pretty much fall apart in the past couple of weeks, you could come up with a lot of theories. The pitching, for the most part, has held up until then even after losing 3/5 of the rotation members, CC Sabathia, Ivan Nova and Michael Pineda, but it’s pretty hard for them to win all those games with a very inexperienced staff. 4/5 of the pitchers are rookies who never had a job as a starting pitcher.
As far as the offense, it hasn’t been terrible, but after losing big hitters such as Robinson Cano and Curtis Granderson, regular All-Stars, it isn’t so fun to have them replace by Brian Roberts and Jacoby Ellsbury. Also catcher Brian McCann, who was supposed to have a great season, is aging terribly. This has so far been his worst first half of a season. It didn’t either help to have Mark Teixeira and Carlos Beltran on the DL.
So after the Yankees have gone 3-7 in their last 10 and lost 3 straight games, I still definitely believe in them to make a strong run for the playoffs, and I think it will happen by the end of the season, which by then the Bombers should be able to pick up their playing level.
Could it be that the best available free-agent will end up in The Bronx? Possibly. Chances are that he will sign with the Yanks or the Dodgers.
Masahiro Tanaka, 25, is the highest touted free-agent. He comes from Japan. He just finished a season in the Nippon professional league with a 24-0 record, and an amazing 1.27 ERA. The Yankees, along with the Dodgers, are front runners to sign Tanaka. His suggested contract is at least 17MM and a deal reaching at least 5 years. The prices could and will probably go north of that as a possible 5-year 100MM. The Yankees are now in a big need of starting pitching, seeing as their staff is weak, only with CC Sabathia and Hiroki Kuroda with sure spots. Then their are the weak possibilities of Michael Pineda, Ivan Nova, and Andy Phelps among others.
The Bombers just cleared 27.5MM this year on their payroll, seeing that Alex Rodriguez just got a full season ban. That money should definitely give the Yankees the push and urge to sign the Japanese phenom. After A-Rod lost the arbitration in which saying that he was caught performance-enhancing drugs.
The Dodgers, on the other hand, have plenty of money,(even though they have the highest payroll in the Bigs) and they aren’t afraid to spend a ton of cash to win the sweepstakes. They also have a good pitching rotation, with Zack Greinke, Clayton Kershaw, and Chad Billingsly.
To finish, the Yankees should grab at this big chance to sign a big-time pitcher who can fix the Yankees final problem and stumbling block to the World Series in 2014.
Seeing as the default pitching rotation size is 5 men, I’m pretty sure the New York Yankees will be sticking to that rule this year.
There are 3 pitchers who all have significant chances to make the rotation. Then there is another 3 pitchers who are locks in the rotation. There is no doubt that CC Sabathia, Hiroki Kuroda, or Andy Pettitte will easily make the starting staff (unless there is an injury). Then there is Phil Hughes, Ivan Nova, and David Phelps. Phelps is a young pitcher who came in to the Major Leagues last year mostly as a relief pitcher. I think that the Yankees should put in Ivan Nova and Phil Hughes, but that the team will put in David Phelps and Phil Hughes.
Putting Phelps in the rotation I believe, is a risky move. I also believe that the media is giving way too much credit to him. I think in a few years he will be able to blossom into a great player, but now I feel is a little too early for him to be able to have a giant role on the team.
Putting Phelps in the bullpen and seeing how he does, while examining how Nova and Hughes operate in the rotation, and possibly removing one of the to put in Andy Phelps if they are not pitching well sounds to me like the best possible way to go.
This is the second of a possible series of writing that is about the possibility of the New York Yankees not having a good season. I consider a great season for the Yankees winning the World Series. I consider a good season making the playoffs.
In the first post in this series I discussed if the Yankees were doomed in last year’s playoffs. Here in the continuation, I will write briefly about whether or not I think the Yanks will have a successful season, and if they do, which place will they get into, etc.
It is completely and totally correct to blame the Yankees for their quiet and seemingly unhelpful off-season, especially compared to the big changes the other teams in the AL East made, it may look so, but it is not enough to finally say that the Bombers do not have a chance to make the playoffs, and certainly not enough to say they might be in the bottom of the division. For starters, the Yankees are still a much better team than The Boston Red Sox without doubt. Secondly, the Yanks can be said, arguably, better than any other team in the East in a least one big topic.
The Yankees are better than:
Boston Red Sox: The Bombers biggest lead over the Red Sox has to be pitching. The Yankees have a medium edge in Starting Pitching, but a big edge in Relief.
Baltimore Orioles: The Yankees have a few medium leads over the Orioles in stats, but the biggest is the difference in the right side of the infield. Robinson Cano is so much better than Ryan Flaherty, and Mark Teixeira creams Chris Davis in defense and power.
Tampa Bay Rays: Power is considered one of the most important factors in baseball. This is what Tampa flaws the most at. The Yankees have one of the best offenses in the game that this is easily the biggest edge over the Rays easily.
Toronto Blue Jays: The Jays are one of the best teams in baseball, seeing as the huge off-season moves they made, getting big players like: R.A. Dickey, Jose Reyes, and Mark Buehrle. New York edges Toronto by a lot in the category of Relief pitching. Relief is one of the only flaws of Toronto.
I am guessing that the AL East will end up in the order:
1: Toronto Blue Jays
2: New York Yankees
3: Baltimore Orioles
4: Tampa Bay Rays
5: Boston Red Sox
It is important to understand that it was tough to make these choices, and that there is a very big chance that my predictions will be wrong.
Stay tuned Yankees Universe.
The New York Yankees recently found out that Alex Rodriguez has torn his hip and that he will miss most of the 2013 season. The Yankees quickly responded and approached Kevin Youkilis with a big 12 million dollar deal for one year of playing (If he’s worth that is another story). Soon after the Cleveland Indians offered a 2-year 18 million deal.
I think that Youk will go with the Indians because he was offered a 2 year deal, maybe less money, but it is quieter and more fit for Youkilis. On the other hand, like I said before, it is a few less million dollars and Kevin would probably like to be on a winning team and I think if he joins, they could be a good contending team with a possible deep playoff run.
I think the decision will surprise me both ways and the signing will be done in a matter of days.
After a huge comeback win on Sunday, the Orioles got back and won 3-2 on Monday.
The New York Yankees played a crucial game on Monday night.They didn’t look like the Bombers, neither did their pitching. Andy Pettite pitched fine, but he was expected to throw a gem. The Yankees’ hitters only scored 2 runs on 9 hits! That is ridiculous. I feel it was not the Orioles’ bullpen who got out of huge jams several times, but New York’s hitters who did not step up and play like champions.
The Series is tied 1-1 stay tuned for game 3 on October 10 at 8:00 Eastern.